Obed Watershed Community Association (OWCA) is a Crossville, TN-based nonprofit with the mission to protect and enhance the watersheds of the
 Obed River and its tributaries within Cumberland County, TN through community education, creating opportunities for community research and service projects, and promoting conservation, recreation, and best management practices.  It also supports activities in other nearby watersheds both within Cumberland County and surrounding counties.

 all activities and upcoming Events please continue scrolling!

Keep it Clean 5K

and One Mile Fun Run

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Cumberland Mountain State Park

    Registration for the Keep it Clean 5K and One Mile Fun Run is now open.  You can register on-line through our "store."  Register here.
Or you can download the registration form and mail it in.

  It’s Summer!

    April and May turned warm and dry and we got BUSY!  We wound up the project at the Little Obed near Genesis and I-40, reconstructed a rock structure at the OWCA wetland that was allowing the upper wetland to drain, planted like crazy on a number of sites, and had a very successful Native Plant Sale at the end of April.  We also cut a new Nature Trail at Stone Elementary School and did our normal presentation at the Sustainability Fair.  Those are just the highlights.  Read more below.

  June and July bring lots of opportunities.  The BIG EVENT is WaterFest, bigger and better than ever on July 25th.  We've got opportunities to tour our most recent project, hike along Daddy's Creek, and participate in a number of volunteer activities including our annual Stream Clean up at Devil’s Breakfast Table on July 11th.

                  RECENT ACTIVITIES

Little Obed Project Completed!

  We began in April with planting of 32 balled trees, along with 15 balled native azaleas and blueberries.  We followed with some additional rock work on the clay steps, did some additional seedling planting of about 200 plants, both on the top of the bank and within the in-stream wetland, and seeded and strawed the areas that the heavy equipment had torn up.

    Starting in mid-May, the back hoe came back and worked on the final task of the project - removing the broken concrete on TDOT’s drainage channel and installing two energy dissipation structures to slow the water before it enters the stream channel itself.  As these were the first structures of this type that OWCA has built, it was great to see how well these structures turned out.

   Dennis and Scott did most of the work on these structures with the backhoe work by J & S Construction.  Annell Fields, Taneesha Dutchover, Katie Heying and Scott Collie worked with Dennis on the planting and Denise Aquista volunteered as a planter one day.   A special thanks is due here to Veolia for lending us their “Gator” throughout the project.   

 CoLinx Invasives

     After clearing another area of invasives in March, there was a day of planting native plant seedlings in April and another day working on large invasives along the perimeter of the wetland.  We’ll be back next year to do more.

Debris Clearing, Planting at CMSP

    We spent four days at the beginning of April, clearing debris from Three Mile Creek and overplanting the areas on three Mile and Byrds Creek we had worked on last year.  All the stabilization work is looking really good!  Thanks to Ila Rozelle, Annell Fields, Taneesha Dutchover, Scott Collie and volunteer Charla Cooper for helping with this.                  

Wetland Visit Leads to Repair Project

    On our visit to the OWCA wetland in conjunction with the Frog and Toad workshop in April, we noticed that there had been significant erosion of the outlet of the upper wetland.  The bottom had eroded behind the dam structure and was moving upstream, lowering the water level in the wetland and potentially recreating the original stream channel, leaving the wetland dry.    After obtaining permission from TDEC to make the repairs, rock was brought in to build a new rock structure designed to restore the original water level.  Over three tons of stone were placed by hand to create the structure as well as a number of loads of sandstone gravel to fill the spaces between the larger rock.  With the help of Scott Collie and Eli Lester, Dennis was able to construct the new grade structure in five days.  We’ll be monitoring its performance through heavy rains.

Stone Elementary Nature Trail

    Thanks to the outreach efforts of Annell Fields, the long discussed addition of a nature trail at Stone Elementary School took a great leap into reality in May.  Dennis, Scott Collie, Taneesha Dutchover, and volunteer Christina Burgess laid out and cleared a trail that runs to and along one of the creeks, a tributary to the Little Obed, that runs through the school property.

After a couple days of clearing, Annell was able to conduct a couple of nature enrichment sessions with three different classes of students, introducing them to the stream, the trail, and her pet corn snake.  The second grade class also participated in the planting of a tulip poplar tree near the parking lot of the school.  We hope to continue working with the teachers and the school PTO to develop the trail as an educational focus for the school.     


Staff Member Angela with a turtle in Centennial ParkStaff Member Angela with a Snapping Turtle in Centennial Park. 

Daddys Creek Overlook Hike

Thursday, June 11, 2015

9:00 a.m. at trailhead parking

8:30 car pool from Common Ground

(405 W 4th St)


    Daddys Creek is a magnificent part of the Obed system and really takes on it’s spectacular qualities as it heads past Fairfield Glade.  The Fairfield Glade trail group has built a 2 mile trail that both provides overlooks for Daddys Creek and also runs along the stream itself.  Ron Hazel, who is very familiar with the trail and the plants that grow along it will lead the experience.

    Call Ron at 210-0545 if you have questions about the hike.  The trail parking is located as follows from the 4 way stop on Peavine Rd in Fairfield Glade:  Take Peavine Road for 0.5 miles to Westchester Drive. Go south on Westchester for 3.1 miles.  Just past the Dorchester Golf course look for the sign to turn left toward the "Overlook" on Windsor Drive. Continue following signs for 0.8 miles and several turns to the overlook parking.

Little Obed Genesis Project Tour

Tuesday, June 16, 2015  4:00 p.m.

  Meet at EcoTravel Plaza Parking lot on Genesis Road

    We started this project in October of 2014 and now that it’s completed, we want to show it off.  As this is not on public land, we want to have this opportunity to show our members and others from the community what this restoration project looks like.  This was the first project where we used heavy equipment to reshape the bank and the project has a number of other unique aspects.  We’ll meet at the Ecotravel Plaza and then go across the road to a parking area and walk down along the project area.  As the vegetation has grown back well in much of the area, wear long pants.  Call Dennis at 210-3611 if the weather looks iffy and he can let you know if we’re going ahead or will postpone.

Stream Clean-up

at Devil’s Breakfast Table

Saturday, July 11, 2015 9:00 a.m.

Meet at Common Ground at 8:15 a.m.

  This is our eighth year doing clean-ups at Devil’s Breakfast Table on Daddys Creek.  This beautiful and popular spot is located within the Catoosa Wildlife Management Area.  We start early to avoid the July heat.  We’re always done in less than two hours, sometimes less than an hour, depending on the amount of trash we find.  Wear long pants for the clean-up work, but you can change into swimming after in the big swimming hole.  Treats and refreshments are provided along with gloves, bags, etc.  Participants earn an OWCA T-shirt.  Please call Dennis at 484-9033 and let him know if you will be participating, but it’s OK to just show up.

WaterFest 2015

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Meadow Park Lake

3 - 8 p.m.

    This is our fourth year for WaterFest and each year it’s gotten bigger and better.  Last year, almost a thousand people attended, with almost 250 people getting out in the water.  Our friends at TSRA will be running the on-water activities, helping people select the boat of their choice, making sure that they know how to paddle it, and ensuring that everyone has fun and is safe.  Leisure Kraft is again loaning one of their pontoon boats so that with the city’s pontoon, there are two boats running motorized tours of the lake.

    There will be lots of educational exhibits with the State Park’s live animals, TWRA’s big fish tank of fish from the lake, the National Park Service, and others.   The Children’s program will be back again with games and activities for children off the water.  Finally, the music begins at 5:00 with our favorites Steep Creek and Carrie Hassler each providing their popular form of music.  Of course, there is food and drinks for sale, but the best thing is everything else is FREE.

    As you might expect, an event like this takes lots of people working together, so we need more and more volunteers each year.  If you want to be part of the planning or just can give an hour on the day of the event, we can use your help.  June Zettelmeyer is coordinating volunteers, so give her a call at 788-5022 and she’ll match you with an activity that you’ll enjoy.  Follow the latest developments on WaterFest by visiting our WaterFest website.





  • Posted Sep 4, 2013, 10:10 AM by Angela Damron
  • Upcoming Activities and Event Dates - November 2014!

     November Activities

    Little Obed Restoration Project

         We expect to have this rock structure completed by the end of the first week in November so that soil that was removed in sloping the banks can be returned as fill in raising the stream bottom.  There will be a couple of other much small rock structures built to reduce further erosion in a couple of other areas of the stream.  About another hundred revetments will be installed, along with seeding and matting the newly sloped banks.  This should keep us busy throughout the month of November.  We welcome volunteers at any time.  If you just want to come out and help get the trash out of the stream, we could use the help.  Call Dennis if you’re interested - 484-9033.

    Field Trip to Rugby

    Saturday, November 15
    Meet at Common Ground at 8:30 a.m.
    (405 West 4th St in Crossville)

        Here’s an opportunity for two short naturalist hikes in Rugby Tennessee led by State Naturalist Lisa Huff.  She will take us on a late morning hike of the Massengale Homeplace Natural Area, the site of the first pioneer settlement.  This is an easy hike into a beautiful forested area.  Afterward, you can brown bag your lunch or eat at the Harrow Road Café in Rugby.  After lunch Lisa will lead us on the trail to the Gentlemen's Swimming Hole, again an easy hike.  The first hike starts at 11 am Eastern if you'd prefer to drive separately.   Please wear sturdy shoes and dress for cool weather, and bring your camera.  Rugby itself is a historic tourist attraction and there are buildings and a museum to tour as well.  For more information on Rugby, check www.historicrugby.org.

    Board Positions Available

         We still have some openings for Board members. If you have been thinking about raising your involvement in the organization to the next level, please let Bill Morgan know so he can discuss with you the expectations for Board members so you can decide whether this is something you would like to do.  Bill’s number is 456-9040.   

    WaterFest Website:  crossvillewaterfest.org

     Amazon Shopping Link

    Amazon’s program to help non-profits continues all year.  If you’re going to make seasonal purchases through Amazon, help OWCA by using the link: http://smile.amazon.com/ch/72-1594762


         The OWCA Board includes Bill Morgan (President),  Mary Lou Matteson (Treasurer), Robert Safdie (Secretary), Matt Matteson, Teresa Payne, and Denise Aquista. 

     OWCA sponsors are CoLinx, Manchester Tank, Stonehaus Winery, Silvara Stone, Crossville Friends Meeting, Veolia Water NA, Tennessee Heart, EcoTravel Plaza, FirstBank, Highland Federal Savings and Loan, and Cumberland County Bank. 

     OWCA is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit membership organization.  Tax deductible contributions can be sent to OWCA, 185 Hood Dr. Crossville, TN 38555.  Dennis Gregg is the Executive Director and can be reached at 484-9033 or 210-3611.

    405 4th St

    185 Hood Dr

    Posted Nov 9, 2014, 3:39 PM by Dennis Gregg
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